Pintail Case Study

Q&A with Ciaran Clissman founder of Pintail Limited 

Pintail Case Study  Pintail Logo

  1. Tell us about your business.

Ciaran Clissmann is the founder of Pintail Ltd. Pintail is a consultancy specialising in securing EU research funding for consortia of universities of companies, primarily from the 80-billion-euro Horizon 2020 programme. We work with academic and industrial researchers to build compelling applications for multi-year R&D projects, in domains such as health, ICT and security. A typical project takes 3 years and secures 6 million euro in funding. We co-write the applications and then help to manage the projects right through to completion. 


  1. How has Local Enterprise Office Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown supported your business to date? Which support(s) has been most beneficial to you and your business?

LEO DLR has repeatedly supported the company as we recruited new staff to resource our growing business. LEO business expansion grant aid has made  it easier for us to recruit excellent staff, and thus to maintain our hight standards and build an excellent international reputation. LEO have also supported our international marketing activities, which have helped us to grow an international client base, with projects in the UK, Germany, Denmark, as well as across Ireland.


  1. What is your best sales tip?

Listen to your customers, and help them to meet the needs of their own target market.


  1. What was the best business advice you have received? 

Be the best at what you do. Don’t be afraid to charge what you believe you’re worth. Control costs, especially recurrent overheads that you can’t stop paying.


  1. How did you raise the finance for your business? 

By organic growth. Originally a one-man company with low overheads, I took on staff and commitments only when I had earned the money to pay for them.


  1. What are the best digital tools you have used to grow your business? 

Our growth to date has been largely word-of-mouth and repeat business; we don’t use social media or the web, much, for marketing or promotion. Our favourite digital tools, though, are dropbox, google drive, gmail, majordomo mailing lists, and the old reliable Microsoft Office.


  1. What advice do you have for other entrepreneurs? 

Seriously consider working from home, and having your staff do the same. As more and more work arrives and leaves online, the value of commuting (and renting an office) is  far from clear.


Many thanks to Ciaran Clissmann for taking part in this interview!

For more information on Pintail you can visit their website at:  Pintail Website

If you would like to find out how your Local Enterprise Office can help you start or grow your own business, please visit our website on, call us on 01 204 7083 or simply stop by our office on the first floor in Harbour Square, Dún Laoghaire.